R Programming Course


This website is designed to teach you some basic uses of the R statistical package. It will be particularly useful for students who are about to start on an Actuarial Science course at Heriot-Watt University and who have not been able to attend the introductory lectures in Year 1. It will also be useful for students who have previously studied at SWUFE in China.

Please first watch the video below as it will help you set up R and explain how to start a simple exercise. Note that you do not need to download R if you only intend using it in Heriot-Watt computer labs as it is already available under "programs" there.

Now go to Section 1

How to Use this Website

It will be best if you have both this website and the R package open when you are doing the work. The main pages are designed so that you will read them and try for yourself the commands that are being discussed. At the end of each section there are tutorial-type questions which you should attempt. It might be helpful if you open a Word document and type your answers in that, together with any copied R output.

More Information

You will find a few useful websites that will supplement the work given here. The Comprehensive R Network site has various helpful comments as well as being the place from which you download the package. The information on the website Simple R is also good. As well as being on the web, an adapted version is available as a book called "Using R for Introductory Statistics" by John Verzani.


   School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh EH14 4AS, Scotland.

   tel: +44 (0) 131 451 3420, fax: +44 (0) 131 451 3327, email: j.phillips@hw.ac.uk.